Definition of oriental in English:

oriental

Line breaks: orien|tal
Pronunciation: /ɔːrɪˈɛnt(ə)l
 
, ɒr-/
(also Oriental)

adjective

1Of, from, or characteristic of Asia, especially East Asia: oriental countries
More example sentences
  • The works involve extremely simple figures, outlined by elegant and light curves, typical of oriental art.
  • Subsequent years saw the character of Sofia change from an oriental outpost to a European city, a trend that continues.
  • Fenellosa, on the other hand, continually said that there were also outstanding arts in the oriental tradition.
Synonyms
eastern, Chinese, Japanese
1.1 (Oriental) Zoology Relating to or denoting a zoogeographical region comprising Asia south of the Himalayas and Indonesia west of Wallace’s line. Distinctive animals include pandas, gibbons, tree shrews, tarsiers, and moonrats.
More example sentences
  • The Oriental Crested Ibis used to have a wide distribution in eastern China, Russia, Japan and Korea, but clearance of the forests, pesticides and changes in rice-farming practices led to a dramatic decline.
2(Of a pearl or other jewel) orient.
More example sentences
  • The green lion symbolizes an emerald or an oriental sapphire and means stature and robust person, wealth, cool and courageous, stable and sincere, unconditional love.
  • The most spectacular consisted of a ‘large round cup in oriental onyx, mount and ornaments in fine chased, enamelled gold.

noun

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A person of Asian, especially East Asian, descent.

Origin

late Middle English: from Old French, or from Latin orientalis, from orient- (see orient).

Usage

The term oriental has an out-of-date feel as a term denoting people from Asia; it tends to be associated with a rather offensive stereotype of the people and their customs as inscrutable and exotic. In US English Asian is the standard accepted term in modern use; in British English, where Asian tends to denote people from the Indian subcontinent, specific terms such as Chinese or Japanese are more likely to be used.

Derivatives

orientalize

(also orientalise) verb
More example sentences
  • She has been orientalized, eroticized, glorified, blamed.
  • Most likely, someone can object, what I am trying to do here is orientalize the Japanese, and find in the feet of the women, in the way they walk, a kind of last bastion of old Japan, a sign of the exotic.
  • Elsewhere, Mainland critic Dai Jinhua has argued that because Zhang Yimou has orientalized himself for a Western audience, he assumes a passively feminine position.

orientally

adverb
More example sentences
  • He recognised theatrical quality wherever he found it, and was not afraid to use the unusual, as in his orientally costumed 1955 King Lear.
  • In the words of the composer's wife, Nora Pärt, ‘tiny contrasting musical segments - orientally tinted monody and chordal density - converge yet produce a gently flowing stream of music.’
  • The completed water spout is a charming and simple orientally themed water feature.

Definition of oriental in:

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